Banana exports from Darangiri in the Goalpara district of Assam are the most widely used in the country and abroad, as well as in almost all districts of Assam. The banana market in Daranggiri, about 110 kilometers from Guwahati, is known to be the largest on the Asian continent.
Because of the phenomenal increase in banana production in September and October, banana farmers consider this period to be the best time for bananas.
The people have increased the busyness of Darranggiri with the arrival of the festive season Daranggiri is teeming with traders from all over the country, especially during the light festivals of Diwali and Chhath Puja. The bananas that devotees all over India offer to God during Chhath Puja are exported from this Daranggiri.
Daranggiri has met a large portion of the demand for bananas. According to local traders, banana farmers sell 50 to 55 banana-filled trucks from farmers to vendors in this business, which employs 15,000 to 20,000 people.
Daranggiri is the largest banana market in Asia, and supplies fruit to West Bengal, Bihar, Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan pic.twitter.com/8Ct3m1XmWY
— AFP News Agency (@AFP) October 19, 2017
Bananas are both nutritious and delicious. They contain a variety of essential nutrients and can help with digestion, heart health, and weight loss. They are not only very nutritious, but they are also very convenient snack food. The fifth most traded product in the world, banana, has one of its largest retail hubs in India. These nutritious fruits are exported in large quantities from Northeast India and have a large market.
On the other hand, Every Monday and Thursday in Daranggiri, the market carries monthly transactions ranging from Rs 4 to 4.50 crore. These bananas are not only exported to India, but also to neighboring Bhutan, Nepal, and Bangladesh. Daranggiri exports the majority of the bananas used in Chhath Puja.
At the Daranggiri market, we get to see a swarm of buyers and sellers, including farmers from Assam and Meghalaya who are transporting multiple hands of bananas on bicycle auto vans with the intention of exporting their products to the rest of the world. However, Despite being recognized as one of Asia’s largest banana markets, it lacks many basic facilities.
According to reports, Six-wheel trucks have been phased out in favor of 12- and 18-wheelers. Each truck leaves the market with approximately 1200 to 1600 banana bunches. During peak season, the price of a bunch of bananas ranges from Rs 100 to Rs 250. The Samiti collects Rs two per bunch and pays the Goalpara Zila Parishad an annual licence fee of Rs 1.10 lakh. The market is 8 bigha in size (7.5 bigha = 1 hectare).
Every Monday, the ‘Malbhog’ (Musa paradisiacal) variety is available, and on Thursdays, the Chenichapma and Kaskol varieties are available. However, the market suffers during the winter months.
The market was established in 1976, but it has been in operation since Daranggiri was connected by a motorable road.
However, Assam’s Daranggiri banana market in Goalpara district was among the hardest hit agricultural markets during the second phase of the covid induced lockdown.
As per sources, Bananas were damaged or rotted in the gardens during the first phase of the lockdown. At the time, each farmer lost an average of Rs 1 lakh, and the Daranggiri market is home to approximately 7,000 farmers. However, farmers supplied the product to the Hojai and Mangaldoi markets via authorized essential goods trucks. During peak season, they normally sell a bunch for Rs 300 to Rs 400 to buyers from outside the state. But now, in the second phase of the lockdown, farmers sold a bunch for Rs 50 to Rs 80, almost like a distress sale.
Importance of Banana in Chhath Puja:
Chhathi Maiya enjoys bananas a lot. Banana is also thought to be Lord Vishnu’s favorite fruit. The banana is considered to be pure fruit. Raw bananas are also offered to Chhathi Maiya. Raw banana is brought home from the puja and cooked.
In Chhath Puja, women observe a complete 36-hour waterless fast for the health, success, and longevity of their children. Chhath Puja will start on 28th October.